Having already run through the first two thirds of this years Reading Festival with her coverage of Friday and Saturday, here’s the final part of our reporter on the ground Danni Page’s Reading coverage with a look at the Sunday of the event. If you missed her Friday review or Saturday review, you can catch up with them here on the links below:
And now, onto Sunday!
The first on my list was Hadouken!, a band which belonged in the heart of many a teenager desperately trying to conform to the ‘Scene’ stage with their fluorescent skinny jeans and hundreds of unneeded belts clasped around their tiny waists. They definitely brought the energy to the start of the day, even with the cringy separation of sides and the “who can scream the loudest?!” cliché. They were fun, in simple terms – a great way to begin the last day of the festival.
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AlunaGeorge graced the NME stage next with her unique vocals and her interesting choice in clothing, or lack of it, drawing in a huge crowd for the up-and-coming pop star. It wasn’t hard to see why she was becoming popular so fast, unlike the band playing over on the main stage. There weren’t many bands I just couldn’t watch at Reading, but these were definitely one of them. Don Broco seemed to be promising at first, with a heavy crowd and many-a-fan sporting their shirts, but they were quick to disappoint. They tried to be too ‘metal’ for what they were, demanding a wall of death which turned out to be an embarrassing meter wide, and their set was just a bit dull. At one point those fans wearing shirts actually walked away from them, and they weren’t even half way through the set!
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In complete contrast though, the band up next were another highlight of the weekend for me. Editors have a certain prestige about them that’s hard to ignore, and with anthems like ‘Munich’ and ‘Smokers Outside The Hospital Doors’, it was difficult not to go a little mad for them. Let’s just say the people next to me weren’t too impressed. Although most of the crowd were waiting pretty impatiently for either Nine Inch Nails or Biffy Clyro, many couldn’t help but to jump along to some favourites.
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Over to the NME stage. I’ve always been a huge fan of Haim; their songs are catchy, melodic and have beautiful harmonies – it’s hard not to be a fan of them, if you like the genre of course. So when I saw them live, I had big expectations; massive expectations, in fact. They weren’t met. Not even half way. They were, to be pretty simple, shit. The bass player’s bass face was just, well, weird, and the singer’s diction was so severe that half way through the first song, I just had to leave. That’s the end of that.
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Fall Out Boy saw the crowd divided, with many of the ‘haters’ either booing or walking away, and the ex-emos reliving the best (or worst, however you want to look at it) days of their lives. They’ve all aged a bit, lost their spark a little, but they put on a good show, especially with ‘Dance Dance’, uniting the crowd. No one can resist a little sing-a-long.
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The award for the worst crowd of the weekend had to go to Disclosure’s, with every possible douchebag crammed into the already packed tent, elbowing their way to get to the front, only to be jammed into by someone else. Cue the punching, swearing and threats of death. Disclosure themselves were actually really good, though got a bit repetitive at one point. The best part? The moving face in the back of ‘Latch’ for sure. Azealia Banks followed soon after, swearing every two words, brandishing her bright pink and green jumpsuit and forcing all of the crowd to jump and scream along (particularly to ‘212’), apart from the two in front of us who stood perfectly still for the entire set. It was a bit weird actually.
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I managed to run and catch the end of Funeral For A Friend’s set over on the Lock Up stage, just in time to hear the hauntingly depressing ‘History’, where the chanting crowd sang in their best voices for the brilliant song. Then it was onto Enter Shikari present Shikari Sound System, turning up to a tent jammed with people demanding for them to get on the stage right that minute. After broadcasting some new material, all of which had the crowd throwing themselves around like ragdolls on speed, they belted out some favourites (‘No Sleep Tonight’) and covers such as ‘Guerilla Radio’ from Rage Against The Machine; the perfect way for many to end the weekend.
Meanwhile, on the main stage, the headliners of the day were highlanders Biffy Clyro who seem to be incapable of wearing shirts of any kind. They were out to prove themselves a worthy contender alongside the previous headliners, Green Day and Eminem, and they seemed to do just that for a while, until the crowd sort of… Lost interest. It has to say something when a band goes off for an encore and everyone either remains silent or walks away, like half of the crowd did here. A few anthems were the sing-a-longs of the festival, and don’t get me wrong, they’re a great band, but they just didn’t seem to ignite a fire in the bellies of the people watching them. Perhaps it was because everyone dies at this time in a festival? Maybe it was because Enter Shikari were having a much more interesting rave in the tent opposite? It started to heat up a little when lead singer Simon Neil began setting off flares at the front of the stage, but like the flame, the interest seemed to dim too. They were a highlight for some, but for me the greatest highlight of this set was the fire throughout the show and the fireworks at the end.
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Thank you Reading for being amazing. Hopefully you’ll beat this next year!